Brad Schimel

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Brad Schimel
Brad Schimel.jpg
Judge of the Waukesha County Circuit Court for Branch 6
Assumed office
January 2019
Preceded by Patrick Haughney
44th Attorney General of Wisconsin
In office
January 5, 2015 – January 7, 2019
Governor Scott Walker
Preceded by J. B. Van Hollen
Succeeded by Josh Kaul
Waukesha County District Attorney
In office
January 2007 – January 2015
Preceded by Paul Bucher
Succeeded by Susan Opper
Personal details
Born (1965-02-18) February 18, 1965 (age 55)
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Sandi
Children 2
Education University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (BA)
University of Wisconsin–Madison (JD)

Brad Schimel (born February 18, 1965) is an American prosecutor and judge. He was the 44th Attorney General of Wisconsin, serving from 2015 to 2019. He was defeated seeking re-election in 2018 and was subsequently appointed Wisconsin Circuit Court Judge in Waukesha County, Wisconsin by Governor Scott Walker.[1][2] Prior to winning election as Attorney General, Schimel was district attorney of Waukesha County.


Schimel is a graduate of Mukwonago High School and holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (1987).[3] He earned his Juris Doctor at the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1990.[4]

He began his career as a prosecutor in 1990 when he joined the Waukesha County District Attorney's office. In, 2006 Schimel was elected Waukesha County District Attorney.

In 2011, Schimel was appointed to serve on the Wisconsin Judicial Council and the Wisconsin Crime Victim Council.[5]

He is a founding member of the Waukesha County Victim Impact Panel for intoxicated drivers and president of the Preventing Alcohol-Related Crashes (PARC) Task Force, 2004-11.

Schimel is an instructor in the Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Department at Waukesha County Technical College and is a former adjunct instructor at Concordia University Wisconsin.[6]

Attorney General of Wisconsin

On October 7, 2013, Van Hollen announced he would not seek reelection in 2014 for a third term as state attorney general.[7] Van Hollen endorsed Schimel as his replacement.[8] In the 2014 general election, Schimel defeated opponent Susan Happ.[9]

As Wisconsin Attorney General, Schimel appealed the ruling by a federal judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin that Brendan Dassey, one of the subjects of Making a Murderer, had been coerced into confessing to a murder as an intellectually disabled 16-year old.[10] Courts subsequently ruled either to free Dassey or block his release pending a new trial.[10] Schimel argued that the United States Supreme Court should not hear Dassey's case; when the U.S. Supreme Court declined hearing Dassey's case, Schimel said he was pleased.[11][12]

Schimel also defended alleged gerrymandering by the state's Republican legislature, which resulted in the GOP controlling 64% of the legislative seats although the state is almost equally divided in the popular vote. The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit rejected the state's most recent redistricting plan. Schimel petitioned the United States Supreme Court in 2017 to overturn that decision and said, "...our redistricting process was entirely lawful and constitutional, and the district court should be reversed." However, Trevor Potter, a former Republican chairman of the Federal Election Commission and president of the Campaign Legal Center, objected, and wrote: "The threat of partisan gerrymandering isn't a Democratic or Republican issue; it's an issue for all American voters."[13]

Electoral history

Waukesha District Attorney (2006, 2008, 2010, 2012)

Waukesha County District Attorney Election, 2006
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Primary Election, September 12, 2006
Republican Brad Schimel 20,270 57.59%
Republican Dennis Krueger 14,917 42.38%
Scattering 12 0.03%
Total votes 35,199 100.0%
General Election, November 7, 2006
Republican Brad Schimel 132,967 99.39%
Scattering 820 0.61%
Total votes 133,807 100.0%
Republican hold
Waukesha County District Attorney Election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes % ±
General Election, November 4, 2008
Republican Brad Schimel 168,330 99.57%
Scattering 731 0.43%
Total votes 169,061 100.0%
Republican hold
Waukesha County District Attorney Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes % ±
General Election, November 2, 2010
Republican Brad Schimel 51,290 100.0%
Total votes 51,290 100.0%
Republican hold
Waukesha County District Attorney Election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes % ±
General Election, November 6, 2012
Republican Brad Schimel 158,479 99.31%
Scattering 1.096 0.69%
Total votes 159,575 100.0%
Republican hold

Wisconsin Attorney General (2014, 2018)

Wisconsin Attorney General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Primary Election, August 12, 2014
Republican Brad Schimel 219,088 44.11%
Democratic Susan V. Happ 144,725 29.14%
Democratic Jon Richards 90,213 18.16%
Democratic Ismael Ozanne 42,626 8.58%
Total votes 496,652 100.0%
General Election, November 4, 2014
Republican Brad Schimel 1,211,388 51.57%
Democratic Susan V. Happ 1,066,866 45.41%
Independent Thomas A. Nelson, Sr. 70,951 3.02%
Total votes 2,349,205 100.0%
Republican hold
Wisconsin Attorney General Election, 2018
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Primary Election, August 14, 2018
Democratic Josh Kaul 432,954 52.12%
Republican Brad Schimel (incumbent) 394,799 47.52%
Constitution Terry Larson 354 0.04%
Scattering 2,638 0.32%
Total votes 830,745 100.0%
General Election, November 6, 2018
Democratic Josh Kaul 1,305,902 49.41% +4.00%
Republican Brad Schimel (incumbent) 1,288,712 48.76% -2.80%
Constitution Terry Larson 47,038 1.78%
Scattering 1,199 0.05%
Total votes 2,642,851 100.0% +12.50%
Democratic gain from Republican


  1. ^ "Gov. Walker appoints Schimel to the Waukesha County Circuit Court". FOX WZAW. Associated Press. November 20, 2018. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Brad Schimel". Ballotpedia. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  4. ^ "Candidate Q&A: Attorney general". Daily Citizen. October 21, 2018. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  5. ^ Wisconsin DOJ
  6. ^ "Waukesha County DA announces attorney general candidacy". Twin Cities Pioneer Press. October 14, 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  7. ^ Patrick Marley. "J. B. Van Hollen won't seek third term as attorney general". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel October 7, 2013.
  8. ^ Dee J. Hall. "Republican Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen endorses GOP candidate Brad Schimel as replacement". Retrieved 3 January 2018.
  9. ^ "Attorney General race: Republican Brad Schimel defeats Democratic challenger Susan Happ". 4 November 2014. Retrieved 3 January 2018.
  10. ^ a b "Supreme Court Won't Hear Appeal of 'Making a Murderer' Subject Brendan Dassey". Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  11. ^ "The Latest: Attorney Vows to Keep Fighting for Dassey".
  12. ^ "Schimel: Supreme Court shouldn't review Dassey confession". WGBA. 2018-05-11. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  13. ^ Ruger, Todd; Ruger, Todd (19 June 2017). "Supreme Court to Hear Case on Partisan Redistricting". Retrieved 3 January 2018.

External links

  • Wisconsin Attorney General's Office
  • Schimel's campaign website
Legal offices
Preceded by
J. B. Van Hollen
Attorney General of Wisconsin
Succeeded by
Josh Kaul
Retrieved from ""
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